How To Create A Wine And Cheese Hamper

A gift hamper is a wonderful thing to receive. Not only that but if you’re creatively inclined, arranging a gift hamper for a friend or loved one can be tremendously gratifying. Of all the popular gift hamper themes, such as bath products and artisan confectionery, wine and cheese is arguably one of the most failsafe crowd-pleasers. Even if your recipient isn’t a considerable connoisseur of fine wine, a few good-quality bottles alongside excellent hand-picked cheese varieties make the perfect gift for any occasion. Here is how you can create your very own wine and cheese hamper for somebody special.

Pick A Hamper

The first step in creating the ultimate wine and cheese hamper is choosing the all-important vessel. Whether you want to stick to tradition and purchase a high-quality wicker picnic-style hamper or save money with a budget-friendly box is entirely up to you. The beauty of a sturdy wicker hamper is that it can be used repeatedly. Furthermore, wicker hampers are visually appealing and predominantly made from environmentally-friendly, biodegradable materials. If you want something a little smaller, you could go for a wicker handbasket. Both options can be found in department stores or online.

Consider Your Budget

Good-quality wine and cheese isn’t always budget-friendly; hence, you should tailor your gift hamper around what you can comfortably afford. Even so, there are plenty of exceptional wine and cheese varieties available that don’t break the bank. Consider visiting a local cheesemonger to support a local business whilst paying a fair price for your products. Similarly, you could source wine from local long-standing wine shops, where you can be sure the wine you buy is worth every penny. You may even be able to sample beverages before making your selections.

What Do They Drink?

Before purchasing the wine for your hamper, consider what your recipient enjoys drinking. If they are a veracious connoisseur, you may know their preferences very well indeed; on the other hand, you might need a little guidance. Fortunately, experienced staff members at any reputable wine shop are usually more than willing to help. They may ask questions regarding your recipient’s lifestyle and the kind of food they enjoy. Alternatively, you could always seek assistance from a mutual friend or family member.

When in doubt, crowd-pleasing wines are always guaranteed to go down a treat, even with the fussiest of recipients. Acquired tastes are best avoided unless you're confident they will be well received and won’t go to waste. Very sweet white wines like Riesling or bold, dry reds like cabernet sauvignon may be amongst your favourites, but they can prove somewhat divisive, particularly for casual wine drinkers. If you’re cautious about taking risks, stick with a beverage that will go down easily, such as a refreshing chardonnay or light, zesty Provence rosé.

Exceptional Cheese

The most crucial aspect of picking cheese to accompany your wine selection is considering how well they will pair. For instance, if you’ve hand-selected a few bottles of exquisite Bordeaux wine, you will need some equally distinct cheeses to do them justice. Select one or two cheeses from each of the following categories:

  • Hard cheeses like Pecorino, Parmesan and Gruyère.

  • Semi-hard cheeses like Gouda, Edam and Maasdam.

  • Soft cheeses like Brie, Camembert and Chevre.

  • Blue cheeses like Roquefort, Stilton and Gorgonzola.

Remember to keep your cheese refrigerated (particularly soft cheese) until you plan to hand over your gift hamper.

Delightful Extras

You can make your gift hamper truly special with the addition of extras to enhance your recipient’s experience. Along with expertly paired wine and cheese, consider adding artisan crackers, dried fruit, nuts, chocolate and other delicious snacks to enhance the flavours of their principal gifts. You could even include a personalised wine glass so they can enjoy their wine in style. For example, if your gift involves red wine, consider a glass with a large, wide bowl to improve the aromas and tasting notes.

Make It Aesthetically Pleasing

The final step in creating the ultimate wine and cheese hamper is going to the effort to make it aesthetically pleasing. The beauty of a hamper is you don’t need to be an expert gift wrapper to make it look beautiful and enticing. Simply arrange your components neatly and fill the gaps with eco-friendly void filler like wood wool to prevent any breakages. Seal your hamper with a vibrant ribbon, and you’re good to go!

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